Free entry – Donate online or at the museum Open 10am – 5pm daily

MakeFest 2017

19 – 20 August 2017

  • 10am to 5pm
  • Recommended for ages 6 and older
  • Entry is free, though certain activities may be chargeable
  • Step-free access. Wheelchair-accessible toilets nearby. Read our facilities guide.

MakeFest is our annual celebration of hands-on, do-it-yourself making.

Artists, makers, crafters and coders will take over the Museum of Science and Industry for a whole weekend to show off their skills and encourage everyone to have a go at making something for themselves.


Revolution Manchester

Make stuff with MadLab

Workshop and maker station

Build, create, and explore the world of Minecraft using basic programming commands and a Raspberry pi-topCEED. Plus use C++ coding language and an Arduino microcontroller board to create and program a flashing lights LED circuit.


Workshop and competition

Take part in MakeFest Hebocon, a robot tournament invented in Japan where opponents use rubbish, scrap materials and no tools to make deliberately bad robots. Think you’ve got what it takes? Grab an empty milk carton, stick some wheels on it and do battle in our robot fighting ring!

Physics experiments

Maker stand

Get hands-on with some physics-based activities: learn how to make a hologram with your smartphone, tablet or laptop; try out a 3D-printed, mind-controlled robotic hand; and make your own spectrometer to take home.

CREATE Education 3D printing

Maker station

Witness Ultimaker 3D printers in action and learn all about how 3D printing is being used by CREATE Education in schools and beyond.

Program the Baby Computer

Demonstration and workshop

Check out our working replica of the world’s first stored program computer, built in 1998 using original parts. Join our Baby volunteers and learn how to run your name across the screen.

Arduino workshop

In this workshop, get started with programming micro-controller Arduinos and learn how to control some simple devices with short, straightforward code.

STEM cars and programmable buggies


Build a champion mousetrap car and test it against the competition on our racetrack. Plus try your hand at programming the movements of our Crumble-powered STEM buggy.

Trafford FabLab

Maker station and demonstration

Watch a laser cutter, 3D printer and vinyl cutter in action whilst FabLab staff talk you through the process.

Barclays Digital Eagles


See what codes and games you can invent using Scratch and Micro:Bits, plus get some handy hints on cyber security from Barclays Digital Eagles.

Textiles Gallery

PatternCraft: Coding through Craft


PatternCraft teaches the basics of programming and encoding data through the medium of a physical punched card. Join us to explore how punchcards can be used to program Minecraft, write text and even compose music.

Manchester Girl Geeks’ Soft Electronics


Use your sewing skills to make a light-up keyring or soft toy using conductive thread, then take it home and show off your handiwork.

Pocket Wren

Demonstration and commercial stand

Watch a demonstration of papercutting by Pocket Wren and learn all about the skills it takes to perfect this intricate craft. 

Toy Hacker and Creative Stitch

Maker station

Creative Stitch showcase their collection of mixed media work, made using hand and machine stitch, fabrics and other materials. Be inspired to try out different hand stitches and get started on your own masterpiece.

From Meccano models to Lego and lolly stick automatons, watch Toy Hacker’s creations come to life at the touch of a button.

Making Music Accessible

Maker station and performance

DMLab North is a community of disabled musicians and makers who develop new ways to open up access to music for all. Check out the latest innovations in music technology, plus watch a live performance from Steve Varden and his amazing electric wheelchair one-man band.

WoodBot and Friends

Maker station, workshop and performance

For one weekend only, meet the amazing WoodBot and crew—recycled wooden creatures put together without any glue. Hear stories of their exploits or make your own creation, from bits of wood, nuts and bolts, and your imagination.

Express Yourself

Maker station and competition (charges apply)

Grab some fabric pens and design your own slogan t-shirt. If the finished article is too good not to share, enter it into our exclusive competition—the winning design will be professionally printed and sold on the From the Fire website, with 25% of the profits going to children’s charity 42nd Street. 

Stitching Science

Maker station

Have a go at crafting your own patchwork and check out Lorna Tittle's science-inspired makes, from cushions showing proofs of Pythagoras' theorem, to quilts illustrating the proportion of chemical elements in the human body.

Power Hall

Gizmobots’ Robot Sculpture Workshop

Workshop and commercial stand

Help artist and droid dismantler Mark Haig build a giant robot sculpture out of scrap electronics. You can even buy your own mini version to take home.


Workshop and maker station (charges apply)

3D printing and polymorph plastics are showcased in Melt-3D's exciting activities—you can use 3D-printed dies to make pasta shapes, fashion a spinner or build a bridge using printed parts and plaster of paris.

What You Can Make With Meccano

Maker station

Check out the North West Meccano Guild’s amazing feats of engineering—from cranes and bridges to railway locomotives and fairground rides—all built from plastic and metal Meccano. Look out for handles to turn and buttons to press!

Cornbrook Creative Showcase

Maker station

Watch sound take shape on the Augmented Tonoscope drum. Check out Dr Quack’s steampunk props and try out traditional making techniques such as brass etching. Take part in a Micro:Bit workshop inspired by the Sonic Pixels project.

Kids in Space ASTRO Project

Maker station and demonstration

Watch our handmade model flight demonstrator in motion, see how a Plotter Cutter creates holographic viewers, and find out how long it takes to 3D print a rocket. Plus there’s a chance to engage your competitive streak…

What Is A Hackspace?

Maker station

Join makers from Leigh Hackspace to have a go at soldering, using Arduinos to activate LEDs and coding Minecraft with a Raspberry Pi. Plus find out more about what makes a hackspace.


DoES Liverpool

Maker station

See how you fare at MadeInvaders, DoES Liverpool’s animated, reactive NERF range—will you get the highest score? Plus, tweet the maker space's interactive machines to make them knit, light up and produce bubbles!

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